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Today in History

1783
Author and historian, Washington Irving born in New York City
1924
Oscar winning actor Marlon Brando, born in Omaha, Nebraska
1924
Golden Globe & Grammy Award winning singer and actress, Doris Day born Doris Mary Ann von Kappelhoff in Cincinnati, Ohio
1934
Primatologist and animal welfare activist, Jane Goodall born in London, England
1942
Musician and Las Vegas headline singer Wayne Newton born in Roanoke, Virginia
1942
Golden Globe winning director and actress Marsha Mason born in St Louis, Missouri
1948
Harry Truman signs Marshall Plan authorizing $5 billion in aid for 16 countries
1952
IBM introduces 701 mainframe
1959
Tony and Emmy Award winning actor, David Hyde Pierce born in Saratoga Springs, New York
1961
Golden Globe winning actor and comedian Eddie Murphy born in Brooklyn, New York
1973
Martin Cooper of Motorola makes the world's first cellular phone call to his rival, Joe Engel, at Bell Labs
1776
George Washington received an honorary doctor of laws degree from Harvard College.
1834
The first edition of Robert Schumann's magazine, "Neue Zeitshrift fur Musik," was published. Schumann was an influential critic. He helped to launch the careers of Chopin and Brahms, and his attacks on other composers did much to establish their second-rate reputations.
1860
The Pony Express postal service began with riders leaving St. Joseph, Missouri, and Sacramento, California, at the same time. (It lasted only a year and a-half before giving way to the transcontinental telegraph.)
1865
Union forces occupied the Confederate capital of Richmond, Virginia.
1882
Outlaw Jesse James was shot to death in St. Joseph, Missouri, by Robert Ford, a member of his own gang.
1895
Mario Castelnuovo-Tedesco was born in Florence.
1898
Publisher Henry Luce born
1924
Actress Doris Day born
1924
Actor Marlon Brando born
1926
Astronaut Virgil "Gus" Grissom born
1928
Country singer Don Gibson born
1929
Actress Miyoshi Umeki born
1930
German Chancellor Helmut Kohl born
1930
Lawton Chiles born
1931
Paul Hindemith's "Concert Music for Strings and Brass" was premiered by the Boston Symphony. Some people think this is the finest piece Hindemith ever wrote.
1934
Anthropologist Jane Goodall born
1936
Bruno Hauptmann was electrocuted in Trenton, New Jersey, for the kidnap-murder of the Lindbergh infant.
1936
Jazz musician Jimmy McGriff born
1941
Singer Jan Berry (Jan and Dean) born
1942
Actress Marsha Mason born
1942
Singer Wayne Newton born
1942
Singer Billy Joe Royal born
1944
Singer Tony Orlando born
1946
Lieutenant General Masaharu Homma, the Japanese commander responsible for the Bataan Death March, was executed outside Manila.
1948
President Truman signed the Marshall Plan, which allocated more than $5 billion in aid for 16 European countries.
1948
The former president of Mexico, Carlos Salinas de Gortari born
1949
Singer Richard Thompson born
1950
Country musician Curtis Stone (Highway 101) born
1951
Rock musician Mel Schacher (Grand Funk Railroad) born
1956
Rock musician Mick Mars (Motley Crue) born
1958
Actor Alec Baldwin born
1959
Actor David Hyde Pierce born
1961
Comedian-actor Eddie Murphy born
1962
The federal government ordered New Orleans to integrate the first six grades of its public schools.
1968
Rock singer Sebastian Bach (Skid Row) born
1968
North Vietnam agreed to meet with US representatives to set up preliminary peace talks.
1971
Rock musician Wes Berggren (Tripping Daisy) born
1972
Actress Jennie Garth born
1975
President Ford said the rest of the world should not regard losses in South Vietnam as a sign that American commitments would not be fulfilled elsewhere.
1979
Jane M. Byrne was elected mayor of Chicago, defeating Republican Wallace D. Johnson.
1985
The landmark Brown Derby restaurant in Hollywood closed after 56 years in business.
1987
Stock prices rocketed on Wall Street as the Dow Jones industrial average soared 69.89 points, ending the day at a record 2390.34.
1989
The University of Michigan Wolverines won the NCAA championship by defeating Seton Hall in overtime, 80-to-79.
1990
A delegation from the rebellious republic of Lithuania met with an adviser to Soviet President Mikhail Gorbachev.
1990
Jazz singer Sarah Vaughan died in suburban Los Angeles at age 66.
1991
English novelist Graham Greene died at age 86.
1991
The UN Security Council adopted a Gulf War truce resolution demanding that Iraq abolish weapons of mass destruction, renounce terrorism and pay reparations.
1992
President Bush, speaking in Philadelphia, said members of Congress should shorten their annual sessions and retire after 12 years, calling for changes in "a failed status quo" -- Democratic leaders accused Bush of "scapegoating."
1994
In his Easter Sunday address, Pope John Paul the Second expressed hope that the joy of Christianity would overwhelm the din of violence and hate.
1995
UCLA defeated Arkansas, 89-to-78, to win the NCAA basketball championship.
1995
Former United Way of America President William Aramony was convicted in Alexandria, Virginia, of 25 counts of fraud for stealing nearly $600,000 from the nation's biggest charity.
1996
Suspected Unabomber Theodore Kaczynski was arrested.
1996
Former Cleveland Mayor Carl Stokes, the first black elected mayor of a major US city, died at age 68.
1996
An Air Force jetliner carrying Commerce Secretary Ron Brown and American business executives crashed in Croatia, killing all 35 people aboard.
1998
The Dow Jones industrial average climbed above 9000 for the first time, but finished with a 3.23-point drop at 8983.41.
1999
NATO missiles struck downtown Belgrade for the first time, destroying the headquarters of security forces accused of waging a campaign against Kosovo Albanians.
2000
A federal judge in Washington ruled that Microsoft Corporation had violated US antitrust laws by keeping "an oppressive thumb" on competitors during the race to link Americans to the Internet.
2000
Michigan State won its second NCAA championship, defeating Florida, 89-to-76.
2001
The death toll in a meningitis outbreak in Burkina Faso tops 1,000. The government and the World Health Organization scramble to secure millions of vaccine doses to control the epidemic which is spreading to neighboring countries _________________________________________________________________
2005
Two Newcastle football players fight each other, both sent off
2005
Losses almost double for 3, a mobile phone company
2005
Time for North Americans to spring ahead one hour
2005
Volunteers gather to help patrol Arizona's border with Mexico
2005
United States helped Kyrgyz pro-democracy programs
2005
Marketing blitz begins for final 'Star Wars' film
2005
Catholic Church prepares for papal election conclave
2005
Names of Australians killed in helicopter crash released
2005
Archbishop Desmond Tutu calls for African Pope
2005
Chinese protesters smash up Japanese market
2005
World Bank to tighten security belt for Wolfowitz arrival
2005
Tartan Day festivities April 6 in New York
2005
Speculation abounds on future pope
2005
Web site claims Abu Ghraib attack for Al Quaida
2005
Annual rich list shows Ireland now has six billionaires
2005
Akayev signs resignation agreement
2005
Alex Sanchez suspended for drugs
2006
Business Brief for April 3, 2006
2006
Murder, rape of Albert Namatjira's great-granddaughter makes belated news
2006
C-5 Galaxy military cargo plane crashes at Dover Air Force Base
2006
18 dead after multiple twisters strike US Midwest
2006
Alcatel and Lucent will merge
2006
5 dead in Pakistan bomb attack
2006
Iran tests torpedo, plans more tests
2006
Queen approves New Zealand Governor-General's appointment
2006
Australia and China enter into Uranium deal
2007
Virginia law bans mobile phone use by teen drivers
2007
TGV makes 574.8 km/h on rails
2007
Bollywood star unveiled at Madame Tussauds
2007
1000 homes evacuated in Plymouth, England, after bomb find
2007
Iran: Detained British troops do not need to go to trial
2007
Canadian man who found faults of Ontario Lottery and Gaming Corporation dies at age 83
2007
Cricket World Cup: Ireland vs South Africa
2007
NFL: Saints trade for kicker
2007
UEFA Champions League: Liverpool defeat PSV 3-0 in Holland
2007
MLB: Twins defeat Orioles 7-4 in season opener
2008
Australian Defence Department funds controversial development training
2008
NATO summit in Bucharest enters second day
2008
China lifts ban on non-Chinese versions of Wikipedia
2008
African nations gather to support a ban on cluster bombs
2008
UEFA Cup: April 3rd, 2008
2008
Bristol campaigners: words by council are 'weasel words'
2008
California offers rebates for alternative fuel vehicles
2008
Laurent Robert joins Toronto FC
2009
Quiznos restaurant chain airs controversial commercial
2009
Ten April Fool's pranks of 2009
2009
Police: Pennsylvania mother drugged daughter, planned her impregnation
2009
US unemployment rate reaches 8.5%
2009
G20 Summit plans to inject US$5tn into economy before 2011
2009
G20 protests: Inside a labour march
2009
Gunman massacres at least 12 at New York immigration center
2009
Former governor of Illinois indicted on corruption charges
2009
GM and Chrysler receive Canadian loans amid US restructuring ultimata
2009
Mushroom corals change from male to female and back again
2010
Chilean President Piñera discontinues "catastrophe state" in O'Higgins, Maule and Bío Bío regions
2010
Rail network in Kashmir comes under attack
2010
Sir Alex Ferguson: "poor, poor performance" by match officials after Chelsea defeats Manchester United
2010
Space shuttle Discovery cleared for Monday launch
2010
At least twenty dead after mudslides in Peru
2010
Australian rules football: Gippsland Football League round 1 - Wonthaggi v Leongatha
2010
Lady Sonia McMahon dies in Sydney, Australia at 77
2010
Four dead after Washington refinery fire
2011
Serial killer sentenced to death in Swaziland
2011
FDA issues proposed rules requiring calorie content on menus
2011
Man dies after being hit by wave in Blackpool, England
2011
Guatemalan president's divorce halted by court
2012
Australian rowers prepare for Olympics
2012
Palau police shoot Chinese fisherman, police plane feared lost
2012
Saipan Little League results
2013
United Kingdom economy triple dip recession 'to be avoided' says British Chambers of Commerce
2013
Cyprus Finance Minister Michael Sarris resigns amid bailout talks
2013
Sea lion walks from beach into Pantai Inn in California

In the early days of Unix, a date-tagged list of historical events was used by system administrators to add some interest to the system's Message of the Day. Whenever users logged in they would be presented with the latest system notices, perhaps some mildly amusing quotes and one or two lines of historical events, based on the current date.

Today in History (UNIX calendar) uses some of the entries from the original library but is updated with current events as well. Instead of plain text, each entry is now formatted in HTML and each day may include one or more icons of historical figures or celebrities.

Other things unique to the UNIX calendar are references to dates found in fictional literature such as Lord of the Rings, perhaps undue emphasis on people and events that were part of popular culture in the 70's and technical minutiae about computers and operating systems that might not be found in other places.

In association with Amazon, this symbol is a link to related products at amazon.com. Any proceeds resulting from the sales of these products are used to defray the cost of maintaining the Today in History site and editorial efforts.

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